Security Bank Foundation-funded COVID-19 molecular laboratory in Cebu finally opens

CEBU, PHILIPPINES — Security Bank Foundation Inc (SBFI), in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), has turned over the largest molecular laboratory for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) testing in the Visayas region on Thursday, July 16, 2020.

The 207-square meter laboratory is equipped with four reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction machines (RT-PCR) that has the capacity to run up to 4,000 COVID-19 tests.

“We welcome the opportunity to partner with the Philippine Red Cross to help our country in this time of pandemic. We hope that through the donation of this COVID-19 molecular laboratory in Mandaue City, Cebu, we will be able to protect more lives against the threat of COVID-19,” says Rafael F. Simpao, Jr., Chairman of SBFI.

“We commend the Security Bank Foundation for making this generous donation. The need for testing cannot be over-emphasized in order to unmask the virus and prevent or control its spread. I thank Security Bank Foundation for partnering with us in this endeavour which would save the lives of our countrymen in the Central Visayas. As always, we can rely on Security Bank’s generosity to the Red Cross and the country,” said Senator Richard Gordon, Chairman and CEO of PRC.

 Weeks ago, Cebu City recorded its highest confirmed cases in a single day caused by loosened lockdown measures. Due to this, Cebu City was put under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) to control the spread of the virus. SBFI said that increasing testing capacity will reduce overwhelmed healthcare facilities and help vulnerable communities.

The testing facility can help in providing and expanding accurate and precise results within 48 hours. Post COVID-19, the molecular laboratory can also serve as a testing center for Tuberculosis, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Hepatitis and Respiratory Tract Diseases.

Security Bank Foundation, Inc. (SBFI) is the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of Security Bank Corporation. Since the start of the enhanced community quarantine, Security Bank has helped give Filipinos a better future through its programs aimed at medical aid.  Security Bank helps St. Luke’s Medical Center boost immunity of indigent patients through Convalescent Plasma Treatment; supports the Philippine National Red Cross in transporting, testing and treating Filipinos for COVID 19 through negative pressure ambulances and a molecular laboratory donation (in Cebu), and assists in the production and distribution of Manila Healthtek testing kits through a Deals for Donation program by the Bank’s Treasury Group. 


The 207-square meter molecular laboratory is the largest COVID-19 testing center in Visayas. The four reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction machines (RT-PCR) can now conduct 4,000 swab tests daily.


A plaque of recognition is placed at the entrance of the molecular laboratory, signifying the continued partnership of the Philippine Red Cross and Security Bank Foundation.